Tales of Brave Ulysses

Composed by Eric Clapton / Martin Sharp

Song Review by

One of a few overtly psychedelic songs to have aged gracefully, "Tales of Brave Ulysses" is indeed a Cream classic. Based on a simple but effective C/B flat/F chord pattern (which was later utilized for "White Room"), the song has a powerful, unrelenting mid-tempo groove that defined Cream's finest songs of the period. Lyrically, it's a relatively factual and colorful rendering of the great Greek tragedy Ulysses. Taking a classic tale like this to the psychedelic audience was a stroke of genius, and this song is indeed one of the band's most lasting efforts. Aside from the definitive studio version (Disrali Gears), a fabulous live version also appears on Live Cream, Vol. 2.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Disraeli Gears 1967 Polydor
I Feel Free 1969 Polydor 2:49
Live Cream, Vol. 2 1972 Polydor
No Image 1972 2:45
Strange Brew: The Very Best of Cream 1983 Polydor / Universal International 2:48
Classic Rock: Rock Renaissance, Vol. 2 1990
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 2:48
No Image 1991
Various Artists
Guitar Player Presents Rock: Legends of Guitar: The '60s, Vol. 2 1991
Various Artists
Rhino 2:46
Live Cream, Vols. 1-2 1995 Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab 4:45
The Very Best of Cream 1995 Polydor / Interscope 2:47
And the Heavens Cried 1996
Various Artists
D├ębutante 2:48
Those Were the Days 1997 Polydor 4:43
20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Cream 2000 Polydor / Universal 2:50
BBC Sessions 2003 Polydor 2:55
Gold 2005 Polydor / Universal 2:49
I Feel Free: Ultimate Cream 2005 Polydor 2:49
Disraeli Gears (Rarities Edition) 2010 Polydor 2:53
Icon 2011 Polydor 2:47
Icon 2 2011 Polydor 2:47
No Image 2013 B13 3:39
Cream: 1966-1972 2014 Polydor 4:44
The Singles 1967-1970 2015 Polydor
Classic Album Selection 2016 Polydor
Disraeli Gears/Fresh Cream Polydor / Universal
blue highlight denotes editor's pick